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[Level 1: Michelle, Bryan W, NorAsma H, Riley R, Blasefall]
[Level 2: Danmaka, Sami]
[Level 3: Christiine G, Lucas J, ACertainFairyCase, Vaitea L, Paco, Janis N, Goddess_hera, Lumina R]
[Level 4: Browser, Venalitor, Patrick F, William C, blizgerg, wagtail, Hans-Andre S, Bigem S]
[Level 5: Skyler S]
[Level 6: Sir Hellington, Scott M, Jason D, Ryuuji, TimelyCrow]
Peaceful Days… No?
“Isn’t she cute?”
“Look, look, Rurune managed to ward off that small monster!”
“She’s officially my Familiar, you know?”
From that day onwards, Alt-nii was basically trying to boast Rurune to everyone.
Yes, ever since he formed a contract with Rurune, he made sure to always keep Rurune with him, to show her to whoever he met.
Sheesh, it was so childish of him.
…Though I had to admit that I was envious of him.
Back when I was Reinst, I read and watched some series that portrayed the bond of a master and a pet—or a Familiar and their partner, and I wished I could have that kind of bond, too.
‘How nice if I can have such a trustworthy and close life companion like that…’
But I was no magician, so the most I could have was just a normal beast, or a pet.
When I was thinking about ‘pets’ and looking at Alt-nii and Rurune… I seemed to recall something important. A memory that I buried so deep inside, even when I was Reinst.
Ah yeah… back then I also requested to have a beast pet, and since I was a young child, I was given a rabbit beast to keep—her name was Rabbi.
Mother was strict as always, so she gave me a full responsibility to take care of Rabbi, thinking that it was nice to teach the young me about responsibility. And I fulfilled her expectation.
Rabbi became my only friend, but there were times when I was so frustrated because I couldn’t seem to have that kind of “special bond” portrayed in the shows I watched and the books that I read.
Until one day, Rabbi suddenly escaped from the mansion and when I found her… It seemed like she was attacked by the other wild and aggressive monsters. Though Rabbi was a beast, she wasn’t a strong beast, and I hadn’t trained her with anything.
After that, I didn’t want to keep any other pet, afraid of the harsh and cruel goodbye like that. I was also afraid to be more disillusioned about the bond between a pet and their master. Because I couldn’t feel it with Rabbi.
How could I forget?
It had been so long, maybe the memories were just fading.
Still, I felt a sense of guilt when I recalled about Rabbi. Maybe the reason I had never tried to recall about her was because I wanted to forget those memories, because I felt like I was a bad owner, and that I was guilty?
…Maybe because I purposely tried to forget about Rabbi, when I recalled about her, my mind was flooded with memories that I tried to bury. This might be a curse. The more you try to forget something, the more you will remember it.
I bitterly smiled.
The happy days I have been experiencing as Lyra made me forget to think about the negative ‘what ifs’ scenarios. I kept looking forward to the future, and the only moments I got so anxious were when I faced my past acquaintances and when I displayed something that might give off my past identity.
My feelings were now mixed. I had expectations about the future—about my future Familiar. But after remembering my past memories, anxiety grew in my heart.
It seemed that I was too engrossed with my thoughts that I didn’t notice Mom coming home.
“Welcome home, Mom!”
Alt-nii and I quickly greeted her.
“What’s the matter, Lyra?”
“Really? You had this kind of weird expression, so I thought…,” Mom looked into my eyes as she still questioned me.
“N-nothing, Mom. I was just jealous of Alt-nii and Rurune…,” I couldn’t tell her the full story, so I gave this basic reason to her, in hopes she’d stop looking at me with such peering eyes… I felt scared of her finding out about my past identity.
No matter what, I had to keep this hidden. I didn’t want them to learn about it and shun me.
“Ruru…?” Rurune tilted her head when she heard my words.
“Eeeh? You can also play with Rurune, you know, Lyra?” Alt-nii said with an astonished tone.
“T-that’s not what I mean…”
“Haha, don’t worry, Lyra. I’m sure you’ll be able to find your Familiar in the future,” Mom patted my head, trying to assure me.
“Uuu… but I heard not all magicians have Familiar?”
“That’s true. Some don’t like to have monsters following them around, some just don’t want to settle with the Familiars they find not strong enough, while some are not suited to be with Familiars,” Mom explained.
“Uuuuu… I, I don’t know, I’m just afraid to be disappointed…”
…Ah, I unintentionally let my thoughts leak.
“It’s okay. If it’s you, I’m sure you’ll be able to find a good Familiar, Lyra. If not, your dad and I could probably pass our Familiars to you.”
“Eeeeh…,” I was surprised upon hearing Mom’s reassurance.
That’s right, Familiars can also be inherited from the previous generation.
Inheritance… is usually given after the owner… passes away, right?
No… I don’t want to think about it right now.
Perhaps noticing my thoughts, Mom suddenly added, “We can think about it later, when we feel like you’ll need them more than we do.”
Right, if the head of the family retires, the successor will be able to inherit their position and the others.
Domi and Father’s faces flashed before my mind.
Apparently, I took Mom’s words negatively earlier, as I forgot that there were inheritances that could be done even when the predecessor was still alive.
“Y-yes, thank you…”
“Haha, why are you suddenly so formal, Lyra? There’s no need to thank your mother for something like that!”
Uuu, my past habit was definitely still there, alright?
“But Altaire, have you figured out what kind of contract did you have with Rurune? After all, your contract was so suddenly formed… Rurune was the one who initiated it, right?” Mom asked as she shifted her gaze to Alt-nii and Rurune.
Feeling that she was the focus of the conversation, Rurune also looked at Mom so seriously. Mom couldn’t help but smile when she looked at Rurune, before she patted Rurune.
“Ru~♪!” Rurune growled happily.
“Eeeh, hmm… I feel like it’s the [Equal Partner Contract]…,” Alt-nii replied with a voice full of doubts.
“Oh? How did you figure it out?”
“Uhh… just a hunch?” Alt-nii stuck out his tongue a little.
Mom playfully nudged Alt-nii’s forehead.
“This is outrageous. You don’t even know for sure.”
“Well, Mom, there’s no way Rurune could bind me with a [Master-Servant Contract], with me as her servant, right?” Alt-nii grabbed Rurune and raised her up with both of his hands.
Mom peered into Rurune’s eyes, as Rurune did her usual response of tilting her head, “Ru?”
“…” I also looked at Rurune while pondering about the type of contract she did.
There was no way a Familiar would initiate a [Master-Servant Contract] while setting their own position as the [Servant] willingly, …right?
So, the possibilities are… [Equal Partner Contract] and [Master-Servant Contract] with Rurune as the [Master]… But looking at this cute Rurune, I agreed with Alt-nii’s opinion.
“In any case, even if Rurune’s at a disadvantageous position, I won’t do anything against her wish, Mom!” Alt-nii said reassuringly.
“Mmhm, that’s good, then,” Mom said.
At any rate, only time could tell… maybe?
But the next day, when we returned home, I noticed Alt-nii’s expression was a bit sullen.
“What’s wrong, Alt-nii?”
“Ruru…,” Rurune also showed a sad expression, it seemed like she was worried about Alt-nii.
“It’s nothing. I’m just angry at how my classmate said Rurune was a weak beast, saying that she’s got no power, and I couldn’t refute his mocking as I don’t know what her power is…”
Alt-nii pouted before turning to Rurune.
“Rurune, can you show me your power, even if it’s just a little bit? That way, I can let those bad people eat their own words!” Alt-nii said with a little bit demanding tone to Rurune.
“Rururu,” Rurune only shook her head lightly.
“You don’t want to show your power? Why? I’m your partner, but you don’t even let me know?”
“A-Alt-nii, remember that Rurune was born not too long ago? M-maybe she needed time to cultivate her power…,” I had no other choice but to play the ‘adult’ role of stopping Alt-nii’s childish demand.
“Yeah, but still!” Alt-nii was still persistent.
Aahhhh, I’m the little sister here, right? Why do I feel like I’m the older one? This must be one of the disadvantages of reincarnating with my memories intact.
“Well, maybe you shouldn’t boast Rurune so much? Maybe… that classmate of yours was just jealous that he made a bitter comment?” I quickly expressed my theory.
“Why is that?”
“W-well, you were also bitter when you still hadn’t met Rurune and when your classmates suddenly gained Familiars… right?” I tried my best to remind him of this fact.
“Eeeh… well, that’s… right…”
“T-then, maybe the next time you want to boast Rurune, you can take their feelings into consideration? L-like, think of what you want others to say or do to you, when you were still without Familiar?”
I had goosebumps.
T-this is like… I’m lecturing a child, right? B-but I’m the little sister, and the one I’m lecturing is my older brother…
Geeeee, Alt-nii, don’t hate me, please!!
“You have a point…”
Thankfully, Alt-nii didn’t think of it as something weird, or he didn’t feel his pride being hurt by his own little sister (a.k.a me), and I heaved a sigh in relief upon hearing his response.
What’s this about him already getting used to have this kind of little sister, that he doesn’t feel like it’s weird?
…Alt-nii has such a wide heart, okay?
The days passed by normally after that, and Alt-nii had gradually calmed down. I was now used to seeing Alt-nii with Rurune, and everyone in the family was also getting used to Rurune’s presence.
Before long, I was allowed to experience the [Adventure] class, entering the [adventure field]. Luckily enough, me and my friends managed to form a group with Alt-nii, Clavis, and Harvey~! These trio seemed to be together… wait Alt-nii, what about your other friends??
Ah well, I guess they also had their own circle of friends, so it couldn’t be helped.
However, we were only allowed to roam at the lower levels, gaining a better grasp about this [adventure] thing.
…We were only observing for the first few runs, though. As we also tried to figure out our roles in the [adventure] class. After all, we were only given a limited time to try this [adventure] thing—as the rest of the time was allocated to the other classes—especially the [Practical] class.
For the time being, we tried to fight the little monsters while Iris was assisting us. She basically had no combat ability, so yeah… But her assistance greatly helped us.
I had no special impression about this adventure thing, as I had experienced a similar thing when I was Reinst. Training my swordsmanship with monsters back then was also a routine. The type of small monsters was more or less similar to my previous school’s adventure field, albeit there were differences.
“What’s this? It’s nothing special, it’s just a small exercise,” Carbuncle also stated her honest impression upon trying to hunt the monsters here.
“Eeh, it’s quite fun, though?” Luca added.
“Y-yeah, we haven’t trained with monsters that often,” Kiri added.
“P-poor monsters…,” Iris also added her comment.
“……” Meanwhile, I was speechless.
“Eeeh, what about you, Lyra? How was it?” Alt-nii suddenly asked me.
I can’t remain speechless, right?
“Eeh, uhm… it’s… it’s exciting?” I wasn’t sure how I should answer…
“…You don’t look all that excited to me…,” Clavis-nii added.
“Haha, we’re still at the lower areas, so maybe you haven’t felt the excitement yet,” Harvey came to my rescue.
Eeh, so you’re kind enough, huh, Harvey? Well, as expected of Iris’ childhood friend…?
Just like that, I continued to pass my peaceful days leisurely…
Leisurely training, leisurely going to the school, leisurely studying, leisurely playing…
Improving my abilities slowly like this also felt nice. Back then, I wanted to improve my abilities as quick as possible, so I didn’t quite enjoy the process. But it seemed like “improving my abilities” had become a routine to me, so I felt empty without doing it.
Still, compared to my past life, these days were more enjoyable.
How nice if things could stay this way…
However, changes are inevitable.
Unbeknownst to us, it seems like something is about to happen.
“Cyan, how was it?”
One day, Mom asked with a worried tone at Dad, who just returned home… quite late… again.
Dad shook his head with a bitter smile.
“I think we have to increase our guard from now on,” Dad answered.
“Eh? Is something the matter, Mom, Dad?” I asked.
“Oh Lyra, it’s nothing. It’s just something related to our work,” Dad said.
“Eh? What is it, what is it? What guard should we increase?” I couldn’t just let it go like that.
“Well…,” Dad hesitated.
“It’s not something a child like you should know, Lyra,” Mom answered.
…But the more she answered me like that, the more my curiosity was intrigued.
“…Okay, you’ll find out sooner or later, so I’ll just tell you now,” Dad suddenly decided.
“Naraka—the Oni country, and Cielle—the Elven kingdom… it’s very likely that they will clash in battle again,” Dad said with a grave tone.
“…Eh… war?” I was surprised to hear the news.
There were small skirmishes and quarrels between the two countries even back in my previous life, but they were usually small issues that could be quelled after some time, and the harm done wasn’t that huge. It was just some clashes that were bound to happen due the two sides’ prejudices against each other. And Riviera always tried to keep everything at harmony, because if a big war were to break out between the two sides, we would get dragged into it eventually, and that was not good.
But… I was anxious because the way Dad and Mom talked about it—it didn’t seem like the normal small issues.
“Ah, I see, so the gossip’s true.”
On the contrary, Alt-nii answered calmly. It seemed like he had heard about it before? Or did he still not understand the seriousness of this matter?
“I heard small issues sometimes would arise, but is this time different than before, Dad?” I asked, to confirm my suspicion.
“Well… yeah, I’m not sure why, but it seems to be a bigger issue compared to the past, and it’s likely that we’ll have to deploy some troops to quell the situation.”
Dad tried to answer nonchalantly, but the fact that he tried to put a calm face despite his grave tone indicated that things might get even more serious than before.
“Don’t worry about it, nothing is going to change here. I would need to put more guards in some territories, but it’s not like I will personally go to the battlefield,” Dad patted my head in order to calm me down.
Uuh, I feel like my head is getting patted way too often, but I’m already used to it…
“I-I see… I hope everything will be settled soon, Dad!” I could only say this.
In contrast to me who was getting worried, Alt-nii didn’t seem to care about the issue and continued to play with Rurune.
Aaah, as expected, I was still mentally older than Alt-nii…
Will there come a time when our positions get switched?
But just as Dad said, since the matter didn’t seem to influence our daily lives except for some worrying issues here and there about the two countries’ quarrel, I continued to pass my days just as usual.
It was just that Dad and Mom got a little bit busier, and there were times when they had to go out to control some things here and there. But it was just like how they went on expedition or on their travel duty.
Luca also complained about how the situation at his home turned quite bad—everyone was busy here and there.
Aah, right, Luca lives in the castle, so this quarrel brought more impact to him than me. Kiri would often go to the castle, so he seemed to get more worried than ever.
Meanwhile, Carbuncle’s reaction was…
“Aaah, so this is what the elders warned me about. Non-Draconis’ love of stirring troubles, disrupting peace, huh?”
We were all speechless when we heard her comment.
While we all loved peace here, it seemed like the adults or those at higher-ups seemed to have other things in mind, that they were willing to disrupt the current peace?
Ah, it’s not about the people of Riviera, but I was talking about the people of Naraka and Cielle.
They were officially under the peace treaty—but look at how easy this ‘peace’ was disrupted?
I wonder when will we be able to attain a complete peace?
Other than this little discussion we had after Luca complained about the changing situation in Capicastle, we basically spoke nothing of peace and war.
It couldn’t be helped, since we were all still so young. Other than Luca and I, I bet the others didn’t really understand about it, and they still didn’t care because we hadn’t experienced its impact directly. We only felt it through the adults’ responses.
Even to me who possessed older mentality due to my reincarnation and Luca who possessed [Insight], this matter was quickly thrown to the back of our minds.
…Or was it the same for Luca? He was the crown prince, and the king was his father, so he might not be able to completely throw this matter to the back of his mind, but at least, none of us really mentioned this matter anymore.
Yes, this kind of thing was really distant from me.
The possibility that such a complicated matter could involve me was so… unthinkable for me, even in the later future.
So, I just prayed that peace would return quickly.
That was the only thing I could do, after all.